New Year’s Goals and Resolutions
New Year As A Fresh Start, Goal Setting, and Reversed Engineering
We’re already almost a week into a new year, isn’t that crazy? It certainly doesn’t feel like it, at least for me…
For me, New Year has always been a weird time: a time of reflection and looking back which brings some feelings of negativity and “disappointment” about the previous year, and a time of planning and looking ahead which brings some feelings of pressure and anxiety.
This year's New Year has been a little more difficult than usual. Although I had been feeling great in December and I really felt like things were falling into place for the first time after a very difficult period during summer and autumn, I got very sick last week with a very high fever and spent my New Year’s Eve in my bed.
Although it was hard and challenging, it was also an opportunity for me to really slow down and reflect on the past year, 2023, and life in general: what has been happening in 2022, what did I achieve, the good things, the non-so-good things, what I want to bring with me to 2023 and what I want to leave behind in 2022.
I feel like the general opinion about the New Year and New Year’s resolutions - the “New Year, New Me” bullsh*t- are slowly changing and people view and think of transition from the old year to the new one more as a “fresh start”.
New Year As A Fresh Start
I talked about the idea of “fresh starts” in one of my personal insights newsletters back in August.
When we’re feeling stuck not making progress and nothing we’ve tried has helped us out of the hole, maybe we need a fresh start.
A fresh start could be something as simple as a weekend off, a vacation or holiday, a working session in a different cafe, or something a bit more radical - eg. quitting our job, moving to a new apartment or new city, etc.
Choosing a calendar date for a reset and a new start could also be a fresh start.
I and many other people I see start to approach New Year as an opportunity to have a new, fresh start.
Being sick last week, I made a decision that I’ll take this New Year as a fresh start: to leave behind me everything that didn’t serve me and had been holding me back and work and double down on changes, things, and habits that will serve me in the future and help me become who I would like to become and be.
New Year’s Goal Setting
One of the things that I learned last year and didn’t talk about in my article My Lessons From 2022 was about goal setting.
In the past I was way more focused on goal setting: I talked about my system of how I set my annual goals in an article a year ago called How to set annual goals and achieve them successfully? and even made a free downloadable e-book of my exact strategy.
While I still agree and use the majority of the tools described in the ebook, I made a few changes in my goal setting.
I reduced the number of areas from 5 (Personal, Physical, Professional, Financial, and Interpersonal area) to 3: Health and Personality, Career, Business and Money, and Love and Relationships.
In the right section, How will I achieve these goals? I focused more on building the systems and habits that will help me achieve the goals rather than solely on actions and behaviors.
The goals are not specific for 2023 but are more like a vision of life that I want: e.g. I want to be financially independent and not In 2023 I want to earn 20.000€.
I know that at this point some might say that you have to have SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound), but for me, this just doesn't work. My opinion about myself and my self-worth is still too tied to outcomes and how I’m doing, and not achieving set goals affects me negatively and hurt me just too much.
That’s why I like to have a trajectory and bold vision of my life and daily, weekly and monthly tasks and systems instead of goals for the upcoming year.
At this point, you might be wondering how I’m planning on achieving the vision of my life. That’s where Reverse Engineering comes into play.
Reversed Engineering instead of Goal Setting
Reverse Engineering is an idea I learned way back in 2019 when I took my first online course, Ryan Munsey’s online course called Master Your Mind Academy.
As the name implies, with Reverse Engineering you take the reversed process: from the end to now. You Identify the end result, desire, and outcome 5 years down the road and you then identify what are the steps that will get you there.
You make the vision for your future 5 years from now and then you break down what you need to do and what has to happen in the next 1 year, 6 months, 3 months (90 days), and 1 month (30 days). After that, you set up your weekly and daily goals and to-do lists that will help you achieve your vision 5 years from now.
When you break down your goals into small achievable steps, all of a sudden these goals are not that scary and intimidating and you feel more confident to achieve them.
Achieving goals and your vision in life is the byproduct of the systems and habits we put in place in our daily lives. So when we focus on actions (habits and work) and forget about the outcomes (goals), something just clicks, everything starts to fall into place and we achieve goals without even thinking about it.
So if you haven’t made any New Year’s resolutions and goals, here are some prompts that might help you set your 2023 for success.
What can I leave behind me that did not serve me, my mission and who I want to be in life?
What core principles and habits do I want to cultivate in 2023 that will serve me and help me become who I would like to become and be?
What are my top 3 life goals in each category?
Health and Personality
Career, Business, and Money
Love and Relationships
How will I achieve these goals? What will I need to do in the next 1 year, 6 months, 3 months (90 days), and 1 month (30 days)? What will I need to do and how will I need to act and behave on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis to achieve these goals?
I said it already, but again, Happy New Year everyone! I’ve got an inner feeling that this year 2023 is going to be a good year and that it will be the breakthrough year. We got it, let’s go! 💪